Stop thief!


Where did that come from? Overnight it seems to have sprung up from nowhere. Yesterday our roadside verge was neat cut green, then I saw one little white cap and now the grass is peppered with finger-like growths. They are ink caps.

It is that time of year again when we see fungi. It seems as if they do a magic trick of appearing when no one is looking. Their threads are underground all the time, unbeknown to us. Now they are ‘fruiting’ above ground and we can see them developing. The white cap starts to turn shaggy and begins to break up then disappear into itself and tonight there is a slimy black plate left on a stem. Tomorrow there will be nothing left and you would never suspect anything has been there.

It is that time of year also for collecting our fruit to store for the winter. The winds and rain have begun to bring the apples down, so we are picking them. You can tell it is a little early because they have not got that shining bloom on them, maybe they will mature in our loft. The last of the tomatoes are ripening on our kitchen window and Mr T is weeding our winter garden. The leeks and the parsnips are swelling underground. The carrots are there too along with fresh green kale, all in lines marching into the shorter days of our autumn.

Thinking of getting ready for the autumn I had a bit of a sort out (again). And on a mundane level I need a new electrical toothbrush. Off I went to the health and beauty shop on our high street. I don’t know if you have noticed that new electrical equipment seems to be getting more streamlined. As my hands get older, I would like bigger switches, but modern design is smooth and subtle.

The new brush was boxed with a wire and an alarm device, so I had to wait to see the button inside. In front of me at the same counter was a woman trying to decide on an expensive perfume to buy. Her boxes were also electronically tagged. The assistant released the bottles for inspection. Behind me was a tall man perhaps looking to buy a toothbrush like me, or perhaps perfume like the woman ahead.

Then suddenly there was a kerfuffle and before anyone had chance to shout, ‘Stop thief!’ the sales assistant was running through the store chasing the tall man who snatched something.

“He’s pinched a scent bottle,” said the woman. I did not see what happened right under my nose. Things are not always as simple as they seem.

(Taken from my column in the Shropshire Star)


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